Love it or hate it, we all have to go shopping sometimes.
What if you could get paid to shop?
Well, you can! I’ve put together this list of 8 ways you get paid for shopping. Yes, you can make money while you’re out and about, whether it’s a quick supermarket run or a big Saturday out at the shopping centre.
There are ways you can make a quick bit of extra cash while you’re out running errands, and there are even ways to make a full time career out of shopping!
Read on to find out how to make money shopping. You can get started this weekend!
Please note that this post contains my referral and affiliate links, meaning that if you sign up for some of the sites mentioned, I may earn a commission at no cost to you. Thanks for supporting my site!
Mystery shopping is probably the best known way to get paid for shopping.
It involves visiting a shop and asking the staff a few questions. You have to pretend to be a normal customer – don’t let on that a mystery shopping company sent you!
Sometimes you will have to buy something. In this case, the company will pay you back for the item on top of the fee for your time.
When you get home you fill in a short questionnaire about your experience and upload pictures of your receipts and any other pictures you were asked to take.
The fees vary, but an example might be £10 for a job that takes around 20 minutes in the shop and another 20 minutes to fill in the questionnaire. Often the fee will be lower if you also get any reimbursed shopping to keep.
Sometimes you can also get mystery dining jobs. I love these because it’s an excuse to have a nice meal out all paid for!
Just be aware that they usually won’t pay for a partner’s meal. So you could end up out of pocket overall. But if you enjoy eating out, think of it more as a way to save money on your dinner!
Here are some UK mystery shopping companies to try:
Are you great at spotting a bargain while out and about?
Retail arbitrage is a way of making money by buying something cheaply, and selling it on elsewhere for more. Typically, people doing retail arbitrage (RA) buy up popular products in the sales, and sell on Amazon or eBay once the price is back to normal.
This makes a great home business idea as it’s very flexible. You can start with just a handful of products and scale up if you enjoy it.
A popular model for retail arbitrage is the Fulfilled by Amazon program (FBA). This means that you can send your items into the Amazon warehouse, and Amazon will store them until they sell, and then package and send them to your buyer for you.
This makes the whole process a bit more hands-free and reduces the number of trips you make to the post office!
I have taken this great free 7 day course which is an introduction to selling on Amazon. They cover:
- Which niche you should sell in
- Which products you should buy and sell
- How to price your items
- How many items should you buy
- and more!
After 7 days you will have enough basic knowledge to go out and shop for your first products to sell.
The course creator (Jessica from The Selling Family) started selling on Amazon after she was let go and soon she was making enough for her husband to quit his job and work with her!
Get cashback on your shopping
Getting into the habit of checking cashback sites when you shop is one of my top money saving hacks. It can save you hundreds over a year, and it’s so easy!
Cashback sites basically give you money back when you shop online. All you have to do is visit the cashback site and search for the name of the shop you want to buy from. Then, you click their special link through to the shop’s website, and complete your shopping as normal.
Cashback sites often have really huge bonuses for things like broadband or utilities contracts. I made over £100 on my new broadband contract when I moved house!
But apart from that, they have hundreds of retailers in everything from fashion to travel. You can often get 5%-10% cashback on your shopping, and it really adds up.
Here are the two biggest cashback sites right now:
- Quidco (at the time of writing, Quidco are offering £10 free cashback for new customers when you make your first purchase through them!)
I recommend signing up with both of them and checking to see which one has the best cashback before you shop.
Task apps are kind of like a mini, super accessible version of mystery shopping!
With task apps, you get paid to complete small jobs in shops, bars etc. A typical task might be checking if a certain product is in stock in the supermarket, and taking some pictures of the display to prove it.
All the tasks are completed via your smartphone, so they are very easy to do.
Payment varies, but the average fee is around £6 or £7 for a 15 minute task. If you can pick up a couple of these while you’re out shopping this can be a nice little bonus!
Here are the top task apps to download:
- Field Agent
- Clic and Walk
Scan your receipts
You simply have to take pictures of your receipts after each shopping trip, and the apps will reward you with points. Once you’ve got enough points, you can turn them into PayPal cash or vouchers.
The companies use your shopping data for market research.
Shoppix pays better and it’s much faster to cash out. I’ve found Receipt Hog to be a real slow burner, but you can upload the same receipts to both apps, so you may as well try it and see how you like it.
You won’t make masses of money scanning your receipts, but it’s a good way to make some extra cash from something you would literally just throw away otherwise!
Get paid to walk
A big shopping trip can be a surprising amount of exercise! If you have a fitness tracker, you’ll know that a few hours walking around a shopping centre can add a few thousand steps to your daily total.
Next time, monetise these steps by downloading one of the apps that pay you to walk!
With Sweatcoin, you get paid virtual coins for the steps you take. You can convert these coins into freebies, discounts and even cash in their store. (Warning: it does take a long time to earn enough for a PayPal payment!)
BetterPoints is a similar app that gives you points for walking (and also cycling and running). You can exchange your points for high street vouchers.
If you sign up with BetterPoints you can use my referral code CLHX-VHZM to open up additional rewards 🙂
Both of these are slow burners and won’t make you rich. But you can let them run in the background and earn coins for literally just going about your life, so it’s worth a try!
Become a personal shopper
This could be an interesting career option for someone who loves shopping and fashion! Personal shoppers accompany clients on their shopping trip to help them chose what to buy. Another name for this job is ‘personal stylist’.
Typically your specialism would be clothing, although there are also personal shoppers in other areas such as interior design.
You need great people skills, creativity and tact, as well as good knowledge of trends and styles.
A lot of department stores, high-end shops and airports hire in-house personal shoppers to serve their customers. You can find these jobs advertised on job sites such as Indeed.
You could also go freelance and set up your own personal shopping business! This means you can help your clients get a whole new look without being restricted to one shop or brand.
And if you’re not interested in fashion but you still have the people skills and like the idea of getting paid to go round the shops, a different kind of personal shopper job involves assisting people who have additional needs with their shopping.
This isn’t technically ‘getting paid to shop’, but it’s something you can do while out shopping to raise some extra cash!
Job Spotter is an app that pays you to snap pictures of hiring signs in shop windows. You can earn anywhere from a few pennies to around £1 per sign.
The amount you get depends how unique the sign is. Job Spotter LOVES handwritten signs in independent shops, takeaways and hairdressers, but doesn’t pay so well for chain stores or supermarkets.
If you are spending a day shopping in a large shopping district, all these signs really add up and you’ll be amazed how much you can make for very little work!
You can cash out your points to Amazon vouchers at any time.